Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Health Benefits of Manuka Honey Outlined

The Good Oil
By Sharon Stephenson, The New Zealand Herald, 2/24/2008

We pit fish oil and flaxseed oil, two of the richest sources (of omega-3 fatty acids), against each other and profile the health-food industry's sexiest new stars - coconut oil and manuka honey…

Manuka Honey

What is it?

Honey produced from the nectar of the white and pink flowers of the manuka, a shrub native to New Zealand and southeast Australia. Ensure the product carries the UMF trademark. And for external application, buy sterilised manuka medical honey.

What are the supposed benefits?

Dr Caroline Davy, education manager for honey specialists Comvita, says manuka honey can assist the digestive process.

Its anti-bacterial properties also mean it's a winner when it comes to external application. "Manuka honey cleans, protects and heals wounds, minor burns, cuts and scrapes by keeping the wound moist and clean," Dr Davy says. "Plus it supports the body's healing response."

What's the best way to take it?

Take two to three teaspoons half an hour before meals, ideally on an empty stomach.

If you're using it to dress wounds, ensure the medical honey is in contact with the bed of the wound.

Dressings applied to heavily oozing wounds should be changed within 24 hours, but minor cuts can usually go undisturbed for three or four days.

What's the medical opinion?

Dr Pitsilis says that manuka honey, taken internally, has been known to help with hayfever, eczema, gum disease and unbalanced gut flora...

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